Government of Canada announces $2M in support for palliative care for persons who are homeless or vulnerably housed

News release

August 17, 2022 | Montreal, Quebec | Health Canada

The Government of Canada is committed to improving the quality and availability of palliative care for all people in Canada. Budget 2021 provided nearly $30 million to help advance the Government’s Action Plan on Palliative Care and build a better foundation for coordinated action on long-term and supportive care needs. 

Today, on behalf of Minister Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, Élisabeth Brière, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, along with Francis Scarpaleggia, Member of Parliament for Lac-Saint-Louis, announced $2 million in funding over 4 years to Healthcare Excellence Canada (HEC) to improve access to palliative care for persons who are homeless or vulnerably housed.

This funding will allow HEC, working with partner organizations such as the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer (CPAC), to help improve the delivery of palliative care services so that people experiencing homelessness or who are vulnerably housed receive safe, timely, appropriate care in the place of their choosing. Hospice palliative care is a critical part of the health care continuum, improving quality of life for as long as possible. Care is provided wherever the person is, be it in a facility or in their community. 

The Government of Canada continues to work with provinces and territories, people living with life-limiting illness, caregivers, stakeholders, and communities to improve the quality and availability of palliative care for everyone in Canada, including those who are most vulnerable.


“Our government understands the vital role that palliative and end-of-life care plays in the life of Canadians. By funding Healthcare Excellence Canada we are taking steps to help anyone who is experiencing homelessness, or who is vulnerably housed, to access high quality, compassionate supportive care as they manage their life-limiting illness. Together, with all partners, we will keep working to ensure everyone gets the care they deserve. ”

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Canada’s Minister of Health

“The stress of ensuring loved ones receive the care they not only need but want takes a huge toll on our mental health. By working closely with organizations such as Healthcare Excellence Canada, we can help ensure all patients, despite their social and structural vulnerabilities, have access to palliative care with the dignity they deserve in this unique moment of their life.”

Élisabeth Brière
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

“We appreciate the work that organizations like Healthcare Excellence Canada and the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer do to improve the lives of patients across Canada. They are putting compassion at the heart of their services, and this initiative, in particular, is supporting those who are vulnerable in our country, at a time when they need it most.”

Francis Scarpaleggia
Member of Parliament, Lac-Saint-Louis

“Having a life-limiting illness is hard. It’s even harder when you don’t have safe, stable housing. Together with partners, we will improve access to palliative approaches to care that offer the dignity and respect that everyone wants and deserves, particularly at the end of life.”

Jennifer Zelmer
President and CEO, Healthcare Excellence Canada

“Innovative models of care are needed to enhance the delivery of health and cancer care across Canada and support pandemic recovery. Improving access to palliative care for people who are homeless or vulnerably housed is a tremendous opportunity to meet the needs of people systemically excluded from the health system. The Partnership is pleased to support the spread of Improving Equity in Access to Palliative Care and achieve equity in access, experience and outcomes.”

Dr. Craig Earle
CEO, Canadian Partnership Against Cancer

Quick facts

  • Health Canada provides $128.6 million over five years (2021-22 to 2025-26) to HEC to work with partners to improve patient safety and health care quality by finding and promoting innovators and innovations; driving rapid adoption and spread of quality and safety innovations; building capabilities to enable excellence in health care; and, catalyzing policy change.

  • Health Canada’s Action Plan on Palliative Care is a multiyear plan to help improve access to and quality of palliative care.

  • Both HEC and CPAC are part of the Pan-Canadian Health Organizations (PCHOs). The PCHOs are a network of seven independent organizations, established to operate at arm's length from government in specific areas of health and health care policy.

Associated links


Marie-France Proulx
Office of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Minister of Health

Media Relations
Health Canada

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